How many people flunk out on practicals in BSN programs?

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I am an a thirty four year old, "A" non traditional student finally starting BSN clinicals after more than a year delay (due to my mother's battle with Lung cancer that finally ended with her demise). My greatest fear is that I will not be able to pass the pass/fail practicals which make up a big part of the first semester. I will be taking CNA courses this semester (in addition to other college courses) and working as a CNA over the Summer. However, as my wife will eagerly attest (she is in her second year of ASN clinicals) I am a KLUTZ and have difficulty with coordination based skills (or as she sometimes says how are you going to make it in nursing school if you can't remember to put the cap back on the toothpaste!). How common is it to fail out on the practicals in your experience? My plan is to become an NP, or go into medical records administration ( my mother and aunt did this for nursing homes and made very good livings) areas that emphasize cognitive rather than coordination based skills, but this still requires my getting through the heavily "process orientated" BSN program at Ball State. Can anyone offer concrete suggestions that will maximize my opportunity to succeed? I'm not terribly worried about the academics, since I've managed to get high A's in all my prerequisite classes (and I have read most of my wife's nursing textbooks along with her over the past several years). Any ideas would be appreciated since I've already accumulated over 15K in student loan debt my family cannot afford for me to fail!


6,620 Posts

Very few students who put forth good effort will flunk out just because they are clumsy. I am the biggest klutz on the face of the earth and I made it through. You will do fine. This is what the jitters feel like:) Just take a deep breath when you have to do a skill and remind yourself that the other students all feel the same way.


717 Posts

Specializes in ER.

Nobody, out of our class of 140, failed clinical last semester.

As a bona fide klutz myslef, I can honestly say that when it counts, I am on the ball and accurate. I am also kind of the absent minded professor type...I forget insignificant day to day things, but remember the important stuff just fine. People tease me sometimes about how on earth I manage, but my brain shifts into focus when I am dealing with serious situations. The worst I have done in cliniclal so far is send half a split pill across the nurses station (wasn't my fault, I think the bubble wrapper was boobie trapped!), and I stumble a little trying to get around the darn wheelchairs when they are next to the beds in those teenie tiny rooms!

Good luck!

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